New Kid on the Block: Postmasters

Postmasters columnsMagdalena Sawon and Tamas Banovich founded Postmasters Gallery in 1984 as part of the East Village art scene, then moved to Soho five years later, then moved to Chelsea in 1998. Now the gallery has relocated again, opening at the northeast corner of Franklin and Cortlandt Alley.”We wondered whether we should do what everyone else was doing or continue the adventure, so to speak?” says Sawon. “In Soho, we were on the second floor of a cast-iron building like this one. So this is a sort of return.”

Banovich always designs the spaces, and this time he kept a lot of what makes the location special: a row of columns that run right through the gallery, much of the tin ceiling, a brick arch, wood floors. The two rooms in the new gallery are more equal than in past Postmasters incarnations, although the first is slightly smaller. The idea is that each can contain a solo exhibition, or even be partitioned into more spaces. (And in the front of the gallery is an office, and in back—still under construction—is a private showroom.)

The two inaugural shows are wildly different. In the front room, you’ll find “The Snow Leopard,” evocative drawings that Steve Mumford made inside the Guantanamo Bay prison. The rear room has been given over to Monica Cook’s “Milk Fruit,” aptly described on the Postmasters’ website as “a complete and intricately-realized cosmology of sacrifice and reciprocity embodied by a parade of delicate, soulful animals and their jerry-built chariots.”

Sawon says there’s one main criterion behind what they show. “I always ask the question, ‘Why is this art being made now? Could it have been made before?’ Sometimes, as in the Guantanamo Bay drawings, the subject matter is what makes it contemporary; or it might be the medium, as in new media art or a show of lenticular images we have coming up next. What connects it all is that it deals with the fiber of our time.”

Postmasters is at 54 Franklin (at Cortlandt Alley), 212-727-3323;

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1 Comment

  1. Welcome to Tribeca the best neighborhood to be in. Great fashion forward shops, fantastic Michelin star restaurant, and hip friendly people.